Monday, December 20, 2010

Truth Or D.A.R.E.?

> Teen marijuana use rises; 'mixed messages' blamed
> By Anna Edney and Molly Peterson
> Bloomberg News
> Marijuana use rose this year among eighth, 10th, and 12th graders, and is
> now more common than cigarette smoking with high school seniors, a
> government survey found.
> Daily marijuana use among seniors climbed to 6.1 percent in 2010 from 5.2
> percent in 2009, sophomore use increased to 3.3 percent from 2.8 percent,
> and eighth-grade use reached 1.2 percent from 1 percent, according to the
> poll from the National Institutes of Health.

That's great news!

> Efforts to legalize marijuana for medical purposes have sent "mixed
> messages" to youths and made it harder for parents to discourage drug use,
> said Gil Kerlikowske, director of the separate White House Office of
> National Drug Control Policy.
> "Calling smoked marijuana 'medicine' is absolutely incorrect and it sends a
> terrible message," he told reporters Tuesday in Washington.

Young people get all kinds of mixed messages from us adults.

"Stay in school and you'll get a good job... But don't be an egg head know-it-all. .. nobody likes a guy who uses big words and thinks too much...If you work hard and tow the line, you'll be rewarded in the end... but the company just downsized again so oops, slaves in Asia work harder and longer hours for cheaper than Americans ever would, so no more job security here in America."

"Sex can kill you and love stinks but there's nothing more important than how physically attractive and popular you are (or aren't)."

"Drugs are bad and you should never do illegal drugs but here, take your ritalin right now, you'll be late for school. And don't even try to talk back to me before I've had my coffee and my valium! I'll give you something to cry about! And here's your prozac..."

Any kid can google up dozens of websites that publish the latest news about the medical marijuana movement, including the growing body of scientific research studies demonstating marijuana's medicinal efficacy for various serious and debilitating conditions.. . But it's still defined federally as schedule one and this is still what young people are being taught in school, in the DARE programs; the unfounded fallacy that there is no possible medical use for smoked marijuana.

Calling smoked marijuana medicine is absolutely correct in the light of medical research. Even the staid AMA has officiallyconceded that their long held prejudice against marijuana as medicine was unfounded.

Lying to young people about marijuana, or anything else they can look into and readily find the truth about, can call into question anything further you try to teach them or convince them to believe. As long as DARE programs continue to teach deliberately deceptive propaganda instead of the latest good science about the plant, kids will see through the hypocricy and look askance at adult pronouncements in general. Can you blame them?

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